What goes around comes around

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GRAVY TRAIN: Roca is estimated to have committed 110 separate offences.

MALAGA’S provincial court has sentenced former town planning adviser to Marbella, to 18 additional months in prison, and have also handed the disgraced ex-official two separate employment bans of seven and five years for embezzlement of public assets and  prevarication, respectively.

In addition, Marbella Council have been clouted with a humongous €10.7 million fine, while the Costa del Sol Municipalities Association will also have to dish out an as-yet unspecified fee for their part in a scandal by which land was expropriated in order to build a large desalinisation plant.

The dubious incident dates back to the mid-1990s, when Jesus Gil, who later became president of football club Atletico Madrid, was city mayor and created a network of municipal bodies “outside the application of administrative law in order to convert public assets into private benfits,” with Roca appointed as head of ‘Planning 2000’ and ‘Mancosol Town Planning,’ both of which were owned by Acosol, a double-dealing firm created by the Costa del Sol Municipalities Association, whose director was Jose Luis Sierra Sanchez.

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In 1995, this cabal of Machiavellian fat cats set their sights on building a desalinisation plant on the outskirts of Marbella, expropriating the required land from seven unfortunate farmers, who were supposed to be paid a miserable total of €901,518 for their homes and ancestors land.

As it transpired, they didn’t even pick up what they were due, as Roca, who has been imprisoned since 2006, siphoned gazillions of pesetas from several bank accounts holding the dosh, with most of the down-and-out landowners failing to receive a sausage after the initial round of advance payments.

Roca then outsourced a €140 million contract for construction of the plant to Aragall, a company with no previous experience in this type of work and run by another of the dodgy geezers cronies in a move which “entirely obviated administrative and publicity law,” before €1.03 million also found its way into Sanchez’ dishonourably deep pockets after being given a full wash and press beforehand.

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